The Web Library:
Building a World Class Personal Library with Free Web Resources
Online companion to the
Frequently updated: last update = 11-14-06
Ready or Not? Reference on the Web
African American Almanac
Containing historical documents, articles, and biographies this resource
presents an historical perspective of the United States, its people, and
its cultural evolution from the beginning of the slave trade through the
Civil Rights movement, to the present.
Facts for Features
Prof. Peter Jacso
writes, "The U.S. Census
Bureau, one of the most Web-savvy government agencies, presents for free
humongous amounts of demographic data in a palatable way, and holds your
hand while guiding you to the most relevant statistical collection."
the web since 1998, this resource provides authoritative answers to many
general reference questions. The site offers access to the almanac, an
atlas, a dictionary and an encyclopedia.
Old Farmer's Almanac
current edition of the American classic, with “Today in History,”
“Gardener's Companion,” current and forecast weather information and other
World Almanac for Kids
of kids read The World Almanac For Kids every year. This is the companion
site for the book.
Academy of Achievement
An interesting and
informative site organized by "halls" i.e., Hall of Arts, Hall of Courage,
Hall of Integrity, etc. Some commerical links.
28,000 notable men and women concisely discussed.
25,000 of the "greatest lives."
Librarians' Index to the Internet Individual Biography
731 individual biography
sites including Alan Turing, Aldous Huxley, Frank Lloyd Wright, Barbara
Jordan, and others.
Access biographical information and full biographies. Simultaneous
searching of the Internet Movie Database, A & E Biography, Nobel
Laureates, Pulitizer Prize Winners/Nominees, Information Please, the
Women Hall of Fame among others.
Book and Magazine Information
Not much to say here except
librarians and end-users can find a critical mass of information
concerning titles and authors including significant book excerpts and the
now-famous "search inside the book" feature for many titles.
resource for 50 million new, used, rare and out of print books.
Library of Congress Online Catalog
The Library of Congress Online
Catalog contains approximately 12 million records representing books,
serials, computer files, manuscripts, cartographic materials, music, sound
recordings, and visual materials.
This database contains information on over 150,000 magazines, journals,
newsletters, & other periodicals. Use is free, but registration is
Arts & Letters Daily
From the Chronicle of Higher Education, this page
serves as a directory to book reviews from other sites including the
Guardian (London), Kirkus Reviews, the Christian Science Monitor, Salon
and many others.
Covers STM (Science, technical and medical) book titles; full text
available going back to 1998.
Education Review: A Journal of Book Reviews
Made available to the public without
cost as a service of the College of Education at Arizona State University
and the Michigan State University Libraries. Online since 1998.
Signed reviews in various genres from
cookbooks to non-fiction, art & culture to children's books. Search
engine, however, looks much too broadly.
Review of Books
online index. Browse or search the NYRB archives from 1963 forward.
Subscription required to access full text, but an excerpt is included.
New York Times Book Reviews
Searchable reviews back to 1996; helps to
identify when reviews appeared in the print and subscription database
versions of the New York Times. Older reviews may require nominal payment
for full text.
A good substitute for a heavy reference book.
Includes reverse lookup (keyword) search as well as straight acronym
Provides definitions, translations, and audio pronunciations. Has a
American Heritage Dictionary of the
90,000 entries feature 10,000 new words and senses, 70,000 audio word
pronunciations, 900 full-page color illustrations, language notes and
American Verse Project
Browse or search the assembling of an
electronic archive of volumes of American poetry prior to 1920.
70 anthologies and single volumes of verse.
Bedford St. Martin's Citation Styles
Use this free resource for help with formatting MLA, APA, Chicago and
CBE (Council of Biology Editors) bibliographic citations.
Dictionary of Difficult Words
Provided by Tiscali Communication
Company in Caligari, Italy , the useful Hutchinson Dictionary of Difficult
Words is only one of the reference sources that enhances the company's
website. I cease its description, lest I seem
Gale Free Resources Suite
Includes resources for
Black History Month,
Hispanic Heritage Month,
Women's History Month, and
Poet's Corner. Also included are a
glossary of literary terms, a
literary index (to Gale publications), and information on "how
to write a term paper.
Landmark Citation Machine
Free help with formulating MLA and APA
citations; fill in a form, get your citation!
Online Language Center
Includes a free dictionary and thesaurus
Nolo's "Shark Talk" (Everybody's Legal Dictionary)
This dictionary contains plain-English definitions for over a thousand
legal terms, from the common to the bizarre.
738 online dictionaries at once!
Translation of text pages (or what you enter as text) between
English and Russian, German, French, Spanish and Italian
Roget's II: The New Thesaurus,
3rd ed. 1995.
University of Wisconsin, Madison: Writer's Handbook
Heritage Dictionary (4th Edition)
AnyWho: Internet Directory Assistance
Includes white pages, yellow pages and reverse lookup.
Reverse lookup, business and personal telephone and address
Email lookup in addition to the standard searches.
Email, telephone address searches.
Zip Code Lookup (United States Postal Service)
Zip code and Zip+4
information including specific zip codes for multi-zip towns and streets.
Encyclopedias (General and Specialized)
The #1 Art
History site on the Web and one of the American Library Association's
picks for "Best Free Website."
Historica presents this site free of charge
to all. The site contains the complete text of the acclaimed Canadian
Encyclopedia in English and French, the text of the Junior Encyclopedia of
Canada (in English only), numerous interactivities, and feature articles.
Containing nearly 51,000 entries and more than 80,000 hypertext
cross-references, the current Sixth Edition (2002) is a reliable and
of the Columbia Encyclopedia, the main attraction of this point of access
is that it is enhanced by eLibrary's subscription features
(magazine articles, maps, and newspaper items).
glbtq : an encyclopedia of gay,
lesbian, bisexual, transgender and queer culture. 325 credentialed contributors
working under two editors offer this searchable open access offering 1000
Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy
Articles in the Internet
Encyclopedia of Philosophy are currently from three sources (1) original
contributions by specialized philosophers around the internet, (2)
adaptations of material written by the editors for classroom purposes, and
(3) adaptations from public domain sources (typically from two or more
sources for per article).
Jewish Virtual Library
Provided by the American-Israeli Cooperative Enterprise, this site is much
more than an encyclopedia, though it does include a "Reference section."
The virtual library includes maps, biographies, bibliographies,
statistics, and special features.
Music History 102: a Guide to Western Composers and Their
Music from the Middle Ages to the Present
(Internet Public Library)
Covers the middle ages through the 20th century, extensively
cross-referenced, and includes sound files.
New Advent Catholic Encyclopedia
Designed to present its readers with the full body of Catholic teaching,
the Encyclopedia contains not only precise statements of what the Church
as defined, but also an impartial record of different views of
acknowledged authority on all disputed questions.
Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy
Designed as a dynamic
reference work. Each entry is maintained and kept up to date by an expert
or group of experts in the field. All entries and updates are refereed by
the members of a distinguished Editorial Board before they are made
University of Michigan Instrument Encyclopedia
Not an exhaustive
site, the content of the encyclopedia is developed by graduate students.
Browse or search for a musical tradition or a specific instrument.
King James Bible at the Electronic Text Center, Univ. of
Including a side-by-side
presentation of the King James and Revised Standard Bibles, for easy
Bartlett's Familiar Quotations
This tenth edition of 1919 contains over 11,000 searchable quotations and
was the first new edition of John Bartlett's corpus to be published after
his death in 1905—the new editor, however, choosing more to supplement
than revise the work of the first name in quotations.
Columbia World of Quotations
The 65,000 essential quotations that
constitute this authoritative collection represent the research of 154
experts. Entries from more than 5,000 authors and speakers are multiply
classified into 6,500 subjects.
Respectfully Quoted: A Dictionary of Quotations
The 2,100 entries in this eminently researched collection form the
constellation of collected wisdom in American political debate.
Simpson's Contemporary Quotations
With over 9,000 quotations from
4,000 sources organized into 25 categories and 60 sections, this
comprehensive reference work contains words of wit and wisdom from such
modern notables as Ezra Pound, Henry Kissinger, George Orwell, Dorothy
Parker, and Desmond Tutu.
Yahoo Graduation Speeches
links to graduation speeches by John F. Kennedy, Billy Joel, Salman
Rushdie, Ray Bradbury, Lyndon B. Johnson, Bill Clinton and others.
& Related Reference Tools
Price states that this is not a comprehensive resource, it is a lengthy
register of sites where end users and librarians can find useful datum:
airline statistics, baseball info, country and U.S. state information,
economic and election resources, and much more.
Guinness World Records
Not comprehensive, but it could settle some bets or provide the
factoid you need.
Specific Reference Sources
Hundreds of film scripts and television scripts, free. For the movie mogul and
screenwriter in all of us.
Guide to Medieval and Renaissance
Hosted by the Musica Antiqua Ensemble of Iowa State University, this site offers
visual, textual, and audio explorations into 32 medieval instruments.
Internet Movie Database
This free web resource put a pricey online file out of business. It's a film
encyclopedia, biographical resource, and a review forum rolled into one --
links to numerous external review sites including Ebert and Rotten Tomatoes.
This resource compiles film reviews from independent sources.
Metropolitan Museum of Art
Access to New York City's premier art
Musee du Louvre
The official English translated page features seventy 360 degree
images representing 50 rooms within the museum.
Public Domain Music
Check to see if a tune is still copyrighted, or look for one to perform
You'll have to use this home page link to access the museums; the
links are presently displayed on the left of the page: there are fifteen
Visual Dictionary of Fashion
("Bisonette on Costume" Kent State University) Covers the 18th through
20th century in womenswear, menswear, and childrenswear. Search or browse.
Geographic search is available.
excellent free resource; this has been a top site since its inception in
The three nationwide consumer credit reporting companies
have always encouraged consumers to regularly review their credit reports.
It was created by the consumer credit reporting companies,
Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. This site allows you to view a free credit
report once every twelve months. Note: this site will allow you to ascertain
your report, but will not provide an overall credit score.
Better Business Bureau
The Better Business Bureau system extends across the United States. Begin at
its home page to file a complaint or to connect to your local Better Business
Bureau and determine if a complaint has been filed against a business you are
considering interaction with. While the BBB pages show that many businesses
have "satisfactory records," discovering that the business you are going to use
has an "unsatisfactory record" (and I did), can save you $$$ and aggravation.
Dictionary of Occupational Titles (U. S. Department of Labor)
The DOT was created by the
Employment and Training Administration. It is included on this web site
because it is a standard reference in several types of cases adjudicated
by the Office of Administrative Law Judges, especially labor-related
Search for specific companies or browse the A-Z list. Free components
of this resource basic financial information on companies, fact sheets and
North American Industry Classification System/Standard
Industrial Classification Codes
The North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) has replaced
the U.S. Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) system. NAICS is a
unique system for classifying business establishments. It is the first
economic classification system to be constructed based on a single
economic concept. Economic units that use like processes to produce goods
or services are grouped together.
Securities and Exchange Commission
All companies, foreign and domestic,
are required to file registration statements, periodic reports, and other
forms electronically through EDGAR (Electronic Data Gathering, Analysis
and Retrieval system). Anyone can access and download this information for
free. Here you'll find links to a complete list of filings available
through EDGAR and instructions for searching the EDGAR database.
Registration is free. Search for companies, brand names or
S. Department of Labor Occupational Outlook Handbook Online
oft used reference book is the standard tool for locating informations on
prospective occupations including job outlook, compensation and minimum
Calculation and Conversion Tools
Online Conversion.com - Convert Just About Anything to Anything Else
Over 5,000 units and
The Currency Converter uses "live" currency rates and covers all
World Time Server
Accurate times around the globe.
Princeton Review: Best 361 College Rankings (2007)
A popular resource for
entering freshman -- and still free (but now requires [free] registration)!
University Site Searches
Google's automatic settings to search specific college and university
Campus Crime Report
U.S. Office of Postsecondary Education's database
of crime on college campuses.
Countries of the World
CIA World Factbook
Solid resource for country information including transnational
Library of Congress Country Studies
Full text online versions of
the country studies series and the area handbooks series.
Very brief introductions to countries.
An annual compilation of tourism information
from the World Tourism Organization including the top tourism
destinations, international tourist arrivals, tourism expenditures, and
United States Department of State Background Notes
Background Notes are factual
publications that contain information on all the countries of the world
with which the United States has relations. They include facts on the
country's land, people, history, government, political conditions,
economy, and its relations with other countries and the United States.
The U.S. government's complete geographical handbook, featuring 268
full-color maps and flags of all nations and geographical entities. Each
country profile tracks such demographics as population, ethnicity and
literacy rates, as well as political, geographical and economic data.
Sourcebook of Criminal Justice
Statistics 31st Edition, 2003. (United States Department of Justice).
The full text of the 2001 Patriot Act (United States Department
Columbia Gazetteer of North America
50,000 entries It covers every incorporated place and county in the United
States, along with several thousand unincorporated places, special-purpose
sites, and physical features, as well as Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean
Getty Thesaurus of Geographical Names
Excellent online geographical dictionary and gazetteer.
National Geographic Map Machine
Map any location in the world;
offers all the standard features including zoom. Other components of the
site include historical maps, flags, and country facts.
United States Census Bureau, U. S. Gazetteer
focusing on the United States. Search by keyword or zip code. Map
locations using the TIGER map server resource.
Worldwide Directory of Cities and Towns
This is a directory of
2,880,532 of the world's cities and towns, sorted by country and linked to
a map for each town.
World Sites Atlas
Connect quickly to maps. Caveat: make certain your pop-up blocker is
enabled, some of the advertising here is extremely annoying.
level maps (note, be cautious when using maps or driving directions from
these sites; I've been directed through closed cemeteries at night!):
Includes city guides.
United States Place Names/U.S.
interesting and useful government site listing longitudes and latitudes for
places within the U.S. Even more interesting is the
State and Topical Gazetteer page which lists place names within U.S.
locations in great detail. For best results, scroll down to "Columnar
Format Files" and click the state you're interested in.
American Medical Association Physician Select
AMA Physician Select
provides basic professional information on virtually every licensed
physician in the United States and its possessions, including more than
690,000 doctors of medicine (MD) and doctors of osteopathy or osteopathic
Created at the University of Texas at Austin with help from the
Smithsonian Institution and the National Science Foundation, this site
provides an interactive environment in which to examine and learn about
skeletal anatomy. An excellent site to research comparative anatomy,
you'll find high quality images of bones, and high-resolution 3-D
renderings of the skeletal elements in both animation (Quicktime) and
interactive virtual reality (VRML) format.
MayoClinic.com - Drug Information
Comprehensive articles on
medications with information provided by Micromedex (a leader in pharmacy
information). The other components of the Mayo Clinic site are worth
MEDLINEplus Directory of Dentists and Doctors
A comprehensive page of links to sites that will help end-users locate
health providers in different specialties and states as well as hospitals
and other health care facilities.
MedlinePlus Drug Information
Basic information on thousands of medications based on the
authoritative USP DI and the American Society for Health Systems
MEDLINEplus Health Topics
Information on hundreds of health topics from the National Library of
Medicine. This site also offers approximately 200 interactive health
tutorials provided by the Patient Education Institute.
MEDLINEplus Medical Dictionaries
MEDLINEplus Medical Encyclopedia
Health Illustrated Encyclopedia includes over 4,000 articles about
diseases, tests, symptoms, injuries, and surgeries. It also contains an
extensive library of medical photographs and illustrations.
Merck Manual Centennial Edition Full text of the most recent edition
of the invaluable medical reference book.
Merck Manual of Medical Information, Home Edition Full text of the
patient/family version of the manual.
free access to numerous databases, text files, and conferences on the
environment. With the information available on RTK NET, you can identify
specific factories and their environmental effects and assess people and
WebMD Drugs and Herbs
Features a drug database, product recalls and FDA news.
A digital library related to Marxism. The Archive encourages the use and
redistribution of the public domain material on the site. Includes information
on the French Revolution, Utopian Societies, Maoism, and other movements.
Crime Reports from the
U.S. Office of Postsecondary Education. How secure is your child's college campus -- or the one you
work at or attend?
FindLaw is the highest-trafficked
legal Web site, providing the most comprehensive set of legal resources on
the Internet for legal professionals,
These resources include
cases and codes,
career center, and community-oriented tools, such as a
secure document management utility,
Full Text State Constitutions and
This page seeks to link to sites containing full-text state
constitutions, statutes (called codes or compiled laws in some states),
legislation (bills, amendments, etc.), session laws (bills that have
become laws), and administrative rules.
Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory
Find lawyers and their
From the U.S. Department of Justice, the full text.
Includes over 15,000 categorized links to philosophy resources on the
Internet. Developed by a graduate philosophy/computer science scholar.
Mental Measurements Yearbook
Free online access to identify tests;
reviews must be purchased.
TestLink (ETS -- Educational Testing Service)
ETS Test Collection includes an extensive library of 20,000 tests and
other measurement devices from the early 1900s to the present. Identify
tests without incurring a charge; inspect test record to determine
availability. The collection is the largest in the world. It was
established to make information on standardized tests and research
instruments available to researchers, graduate students, and teachers.
United States Census Data and Demographics
Population, housing, geographic, and economic information from the
U.S. Census Bureau.
A tool for investigating U.S. demographic trends.
Statistical Abstract of the United States
The National Data Book
contains a collection of statistics on social and economic conditions in
the United States. Selected international data are also included.
General Reference Links
Including free access to: Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th edition, 2001,
Encyclopedia of World History, 6th edition 2001, the New Dictionary of
Cultural Literacy, 3rd edition, 2002,
Columbia Gazetteer of North America, 2000, the World Factbook,
2002, American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language,
4th edition, 2000, Rogets II: The New Thesaurus, 3rd edition, 1995,
the Columbia World of Quotations, 1996,
Fowler's English and Bullfinch's Mythology.
Internet Public Library Reference Department
All the reference
tools you would expect to find in a library.
Forms and Publications
forms and instructions including links to some state forms.
Librarian's Index to the Internet
Links to ready reference and
Extensive service offering links to numerous credible reference
Encyclopedia and atlas.
Since 1995 this family friendly cornucopia of links has indexed and
reviewed only quality and credible sites.
Reference Materials at Yahoo
Virtual Reference Shelf: Selected Web Resources Compiled by the Library of
Tested websites from the nation's library.
Library and Information Science
Journal Abbreviation Sources
Another winner from energetic Gerry
McKiernan. Use this page to find abbreviations or to find full-titles
based on abbreviations.
Back to The Web